Is Colonel Conk Shaving Soap Any Good? [Performance & Cost]

Colonel Ichabod Conk Products, Inc. touts its reputation as a glycerine shave soap seller that offers a slick product with an easy lather. But is Colonel Conk Shaving Soap any good?

Colonel Conk Shaving Soap is good compared to similar products in its price range. With some water and a little bit of work, the soap offers a light and slick lather that protects against even the sharpest blade. It is straightforward and easy to find for new buyers, and veteran users report that Colonel Conk gets the job done.

Keep reading to learn more about Colonel Conk and how it stacks up to other shaving soaps.

Is Colonel Conk good for shaving?

Whether you’re shaving your scalp or your facial hair, every man must consider the ingredients, performance, cost, value, and availability of their shaving product.

When deciding if Colonel Conk is worth the purchase, you should consider the:

  • Ingredients – What does Colonel Conk use as its soap base? Are there any unique ingredients that could be allergens?
  • Performance – How does Colonel Conk compare to its own marketing? What do reviewers think?
  • Cost – Where does the cost place it on a wider review of the market? Is it more expensive or less expensive?
  • Value – What are you getting for your money? 
  • Availability – Can you find it in local stores around the country, or is the internet the best place to find it?
Bar of Colonel Conk Shave Soap in Almond.

Let’s dive deep into this affordable brand and see if it’s worth putting it on your face.


Consumers want to know if their shave soap is all-natural or not, so what’s inside Colonel Conk’s shave soap?

Colonel Conk is certainly not an all-natural product; however, the ingredients it uses are safe. Colonel Conk uses palm kernel oil as the base, meaning their palm oil comes from the seed as opposed to the palm fruit. The shave soap also uses aloe, avocado oil, and shea butter. 

But that’s not all Colonel Conk has in each bar, we pulled out a few notables:

  • Sodium Gluconate – Similar to glycerin, sodium gluconate is produced from maize (corn) and used in soaps as a preservative. This means it protects your soap from going rancid. 
  • Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter – Generally recognized as safe by the USDA, this long title is simply the scientific name for shea butter. Shea butter is loved for its regenerative and moisturizing qualities. 
  • Xanthan Gum – Widely known as an alternative thickener in food and cosmetics, only a small amount of xanthan gum is needed to solidify a soap. There are certainly more effective thickening agents on the market, but xanthan gum helps create a slick shave that doesn’t rely on animal products. 
  • Maltodextrin – Another moisturizer, maltodextrin is made from wheat but is not considered gluten due to how it is created. You shouldn’t worry about it irritating your skin unless you are allergic to the ingredient.  
  • Tocopheryl acetate – Better known as vitamin E, tocopheryl acetate helps prevent skin damage due to UV exposure.

All together, these ingredients and more help keep Colonel Conk’s price low and deliver a quality product. 


How does Colonel Conk stand up to veteran expectations of wet shaving?

Like most shaving companies, Colonel Conk recommends using a pre-shave oil in addition to their shaving soap.

Colonel Conk has some dedicated fans. Their fans look for a classic, no-fuss product. That being said, some people report a negative experience with the product, specifically regarding the lather. 

People who didn’t like the product as much found the lather too light for their tastes. Some reported it dried up mid-shave while others wanted more cushion. Fans admit that sometimes the formula requires a bit more water to create a strong lather. But many find it slick and affordable.

For added comfort, Colonel Conk (and most shaving companies) recommend a pre-shave oil to avoid razor burn and add comfort to your shave.

There were reports from a few reviewers of irritated skin, however, that was a minor aspect of the negative reviews.

We believe that everyone should review and try a product on their own because wet-shave techniques and tastes differ dramatically. 


Now for Colonel Conk’s biggest selling point: the price. 

Wet shavers can purchase two different amounts of Colonel Conk shaving soaps, either their regular bar or super bar. The regular 2-oz shave soap bars sell for $4.90 on their website. Conk’s refill bar (the super bar) weighs in at 3.5 oz and costs $7.30. 

You can find Colonel Conk products on many websites, but they may be a little more expensive than on their own website. But any way you slice it, it’s a brand that sells its shaving soaps at comfortable prices.


So it doesn’t cost much, but are you getting a cheap product?

The wet shave market may have a few more cost-effective options, but there aren’t many with an ingredient list like Conk’s. The avocado oil, aloe, and vitamin E provide nourishment that will please most faces. 

Exceptions aside, we think most consumers will find it worth the price.

There are multiple preservatives in Colonel Conk’s shave soaps that help extend its shelf life and help consumers retain the value of their purchase. You can expect this shaving soap to last at least six months before it starts to go bad. That is about an average shelf life for shaving soap, especially once it’s exposed to water and warmer temperatures.

However, not all the ingredients are considered natural. So choose Colonel Conk if you’re okay with a product that provides a light lather and slick glide, without the most holistic recipe.


Availability is a large question for shaving soaps, as this niche product isn’t always on the shelf in retail stores.

If you’re looking in your general store, chances you won’t be seeing Colonel Ichabod Conk. This isn’t due to any defect in Colonel Conk’s marketing, but because shaving soap is hard to find even in popular big-box stores. The market is saturated with shaving gels and foams, leaving little room for even the smallest tube of cream and no room for soaps. 

Colonel Conk can be purchased online, even at larger retailers. We found it available on Amazon, Walmart, and Shavenation. 

Of course, Colonel Conk can also be found on their website.

Colonel Conk shaving soap vs. other brands

Colonel Ichabod Conk is one of the cheaper products on the market.

While the value is somewhat reflected in the price – you won’t find any tallows or more expensive types of oils in Colonel Conk – their shaving soap is still a fine product. We just recommend that you create more lather than you need the first time to ensure you have enough to complete multiple passes.

Outside of their shaving soap, Colonel Conk sells other products with natural ingredients, like pre-shave and beard oils, shave cream, after-shave lotion, and beard washes. Many of their products are cruelty-free and don’t feature parabens or petroleum products.

Colonel Conk focuses on what they do well, offering four different scents and a fragrance-free option in its shaving soap. 


Cella is an Italian company that sells its shaving soaps at a higher price point, but its red tub has stood the test of time.

Cella’s original formula has been used in barbershops for more than 120 years. Their manufacturing process hasn’t changed since their original formula, giving shavers a classic wet shave. Similar to Colonel Conk, they only offer a few scents.

Their red tub uses animal products, but they’ve created a highly regarded aloe-based product that uses no animal products and is certified organic. We expand more on this product below.

Van der Hagen

A modern brand that has made a big splash on the Amazon marketplace, it’s likely all but the newest wet shavers have heard of Van der Hagen (VdH).

VdH’s roots in soap-making extend back to Holland in the early 1900s before immigrating to the United States. 

Their kettle method certainly involves a hand-made touch that remains cheaper than most shaving soaps. The brand sells all kinds of soaps, blades, and shaving products that can find a space on the sinks of any convenience or ritual shaver.

They also offer a deluxe shave soap that features soothing aloe vera and shea butter to refresh your skin. We also describe VdH’s best-selling product below.

Where is Colonel Conk shaving soap made?

One of the biggest questions that plays into cost is shipping, so where is Colonel Conk’s shaving soap made? 

This U.S.-based company is headed out of Los Lunas, New Mexico. Their company offers free shipping on $50 purchases made on their website, which mainly benefits anyone looking to purchase their specialty blades, brushes, and kits.

While some of the wording on their website implies that they may ship internationally, we couldn’t find a specific policy. 

International buyers should contact them beforehand to avoid wasting their time or money.

How do you lather Colonel Conk soap?

Every shaving soap has a different formula; sometimes lathering can be a pain.

When lathering Colonel Conk, make sure you use the proper amount of water. Some veteran shavers noted they needed to add more water than they expected in order to get the lather going. 

This is possibly due to the xanthan gum binding agent needing more water. Colonel Conk may require a bit of work to get into a lather, but it shouldn’t tire you out. 

Check out this video for some great tips on how to get a good lather out of Colonel Conk’s shave soap.

What scents does Colonel Conk offer?

Even if a product works for your skin or wallet, you won’t use it if you don’t like the smell. 

Colonel Conk offers four distinct scents, which means you’re not going to find a wide variety of options here. If you find yourself interested in a scent, we expect you will enjoy it.

After all, they’re staking their whole shaving soap brand on these classic four scents:

  • Almond – A classic scent reminiscent of some of the oldest shaving soaps, this scent shouldn’t come as a surprise.
  • Amber – While the name is ambiguous, Colonel Conk describes the scent as an outdoorsy smell mixing refreshing resin and cool forest.
  • Lime An unmistakable scent, this citrusy lime flavor did have some unfavorable reviews. Some people said the lime smelled more artificial than natural, which may be great for some consumers.
  • Bay Rum – Another classic, bay rum comes off as a mix of Jamaican rum and tropical bay tree leaves.

All of these scents can be paired with a similarly scented after-shave.

Does Colonel Conk use animal by-products or animal testing? 

Animal testing and byproducts can have a huge impact on the outcome of shaving soap. 

Colonel Conk does not use animal fats in their shaving soap formula, preferring palm kernel oil instead. Palm oil works as a fat base but tends to create a less sturdy soap, which is why xanthan gum and other products were added to the final formula. 

Additionally, Colonel Conk describes their shaving soap formula as animal cruelty-free.  

However, there has been some attention drawn to the company for its selling of badger hair brushes, which are common throughout the industry. So if you’re looking to spend your money with a company that avoids animal sourcing entirely, it’s best to look elsewhere.

Wonder what’s the big deal with badger hair brushes? Check out this article to find out!

Colonel Conk shaving soap alternatives

There are a lot of alternatives out there to Colonel Ichabod Conk, both in ingredients and performance. We’ve composed a list of products that we think both match and oppose Conk’s style and price point.

Cella Green Tub

Cella is an Italian shaving soap that has deep roots and is certainly worth a peek if you’ve never heard of them.

While marketed as a cream, Cella’s green tub has developed a strong following for people looking to avoid animal products in their shaving routine. 

Currently priced at $10.95 USD for a 4 oz resealable bowl, this brand has been a wet-shave favorite since 1899. This aloe-based formula is great for people with sensitive skin or looking for organic shaving soap.

Some people consider the Cella green tub to be a “croap” – a creamier soap – so you’ll have to try it out for yourself to see what you think.

Viking Revolution

Viking Revolution’s shaving soap 4 pack is one of the top-rated brands on Amazon, although its ingredient transparency leaves much to be desired.

The brand’s four-pack of shaving soap pucks offers a ton of value for a persuasive price. At $15.88 for four 2.5 oz pucks, you’re certainly in for a deal. The four pucks include different classic scents like sandalwood, bay rum, clary sage, and cedar pine. They recommend using a brush and bowl for your lather.

On their website, Viking Revolution only lists key ingredients: water, sorbitol, glycerin, and essential oils. Two of these ingredients – water and essential oils -are found in practically every shaving soap. It’s a shame they can’t be more transparent about what Viking Revolution includes in their soaps without buying a bar. Maybe they’ll update their website soon to be more consumer friendly.

For first-time buyers, review the box ingredients and test the lather on your arm skin before going in for a full face shave.

Tunetti Natural

A smaller brand with handmade and natural products, Tunetti Natural has a wide variety of products that serve both men and women. This includes their non-animal product shaving soap that is hardly advertised around the internet.

Tunetti Natural only offers one scent of shaving soap, Tobacco and Rum, that features ingredients that are always great to find in a shave soap – palm oil, coconut oil, castor oil, and the rare olive pomace oil. Tunetti’s main pitch is “making natural affordable.” We think they’ve made a great attempt with a 2.75 oz bar of shaving soap, handmade in Missouri, that costs $4.25.

However, their shaving soap products don’t feature any reviews, so tread cautiously. 

That said, on Etsy, all of Tunetti’s available products have stellar reviews. We’d like to believe their shaving soap meets similar standards.

Van der Hagen

Van der Hagen has made a strong name for itself by also providing quality at an affordable price. 

With more than 10,000 reviews on Amazon, VdH’s three-pack is currently the best-selling shaving soap on the site, and a pack of three fresh-scented pucks is priced at $9.98. Their formula notably includes sorbitol, shea butter, cocoa butter, and mango butter.

A bar will last you roughly six months, which is a great length of time for the price. Be sure to double-check how many bars you place in your cart because some purchasers say they ordered three pucks but only received one. 

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